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Friday, August 15, 2008

Banana Sour Cream Cake

Who can resist a tantalising slice of moist banana cake?

The secret to a tasty banana cake is a well-aged over-ripe banana. I take my banana fermentation quite seriously, allowing the bananas to ripen on the counter for at least two weeks, letting it go until the skin's about to start growing mould - seriously! I then carefully peel the bananas, plop them into a container, give them a quick mash with a fork and freeze until a banana bread urge arises. It defrosts like a dream in the microwave.

I adapted the recipe below from a Donna Hay recipe by adding walnuts - an essential crunch and contrast factor in my personal appreciation of banana cakes. This is a moist cake, almost fail-safe with the amount of sour cream involved. I found it a tad oily straight out of the oven, but the keeping time is amazing, staying moist for about five days. In fact I thought it tasted best two days later.

The cake is quite springy to the touch, and unlike banana bread, doesn't need toasting or any added butter to serve.

Banana Sour Cream Cake
(adapted from Donna Hay's Modern Classics Book 2)

125g butter, softened
1 cup caster sugar
1/4 cup brown sugar
3 eggs
2 cups plain (all-purpose) flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
3/4 cup sour cream
1 cup roughly mashed banana
3/4 cup walnuts, toasted

Cream the butter, caster sugar and brown sugar, using an electric mixer until light and fluffy.

Add the eggs one a time, beating well until incorporated, between each addition.

Sift in the flour and baking powder. Add the cinnamon, sour cream, banana and walnuts and combine gently with a metal spoon, taking care not to over-mix.

Spoon the mixture into a lightly greased 10cm by 20cm loaf tin.

Bake for about 40 minutes at 180C (170C if using a fan-forced oven, and less another 10C if using a non-stick teflon pan) or until a skewer inserted comes out clean.

Allow to rest in the tin for about 5 minutes before turning out onto a wire rack to cool.
10 comments - Add some comment love

posted by Helen (Grab Your Fork) on 8/15/2008 11:55:00 pm


  • At 8/16/2008 9:33 am, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    try making this.. i had some.. it was yummy.. thanks helen hehehe..

  • At 8/16/2008 1:14 pm, Blogger Sarah said…

    Hi Helen,

    I'm loving all your baking posts!

    That banana bread looks scrummy.

    xox Sarah

  • At 8/16/2008 2:05 pm, Blogger An said…

    Wow...Banana growing moulds is a little bit extreme for me.

    The trick with ripe bananas, especially the typical long yellow ones, is to get them fairly yellow (partially ripe already), then let them ripe on the benchtop until they have little brown dots covering the whole skin and you can smell the banana through its skin.

    If you can get some near clearance bananas from markets, so much the better - the almost overripe bananas are marked down when they need to clear out the stock (I'm talking about Paddy's market on a Sunday afternoon), and the bananas there are perfect for banana cake/bread.

    Never thought of putting sour cream in banana cake before. The cake looks delicious though :D

  • At 8/16/2008 8:53 pm, Blogger Suzie said…

    Looks beautiful - I'll have to try it. I love Bill Granger's recipe for the same reason - no need to toast or butter.

  • At 8/19/2008 11:44 am, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    I love bananas anything..!! interesting tip about the banana though.. :)

  • At 8/19/2008 9:27 pm, Blogger Helen (Grab Your Fork) said…

    Hi Kay - Glad you enjoyed it :)

    Hi Sarah - I've gotten into the kitchen a lot more lately, so good to hear that others are enjoying the (slight) shift to more cooking posts :)

    Hi ~an* - That's exactly what I do. I bought an entire box of reduced-to-clear bananas for $2 and half were left on the counter to "age" until ready. I should probably have clarified that the banana flesh itself shouldn't have mould :)

    The sour cream does add extra moistness.

    Hi Suzie - I haven't tried Bill's recipe yet - I've always meant to try baking his coconut bread - coco-licious!

    Hi Mama Bok - Banana bread is a great way to use up forgotten bananas. I'm always on the lookout for clearance bananas at bargain prices :)

  • At 8/28/2008 5:22 pm, Blogger lividlili said…

    How ripe is too ripe? My bananas are pineapple coloured on the inside and kind of a weird texture. They're not mouldy, but.

  • At 8/29/2008 10:41 pm, Blogger Helen (Grab Your Fork) said…

    Hi bog logger - There's no such thing as too ripe :) Pineapple coloured is perfect, and I'm guessing the whole banana has gone to mush. Look forward to some tasty banana cake!

  • At 2/03/2009 6:17 am, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    I made this and it is to die for! All I had were almonds and they fit perfectly!

  • At 2/03/2009 5:12 pm, Blogger Helen (Grab Your Fork) said…

    Hi Anon - So glad the recipe worked for you. I haven't tried a banana cake with almonds before though - sounds interesting!


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